Shipping is one of the main factors driving cart abandonment… If you want to turn shipping into a competitive advantage, you’ll need to find shipping options that won’t cost your business too much and remain great selling points too.
Here is a step-by-step guide to help you define your costs and options.

Where Should I Start?

You should start by calculating the following costs.

  • Defining the destinations where you would like to ship your products. Some destinations might cost you more than others. Your cost of shipping won’t be the same if  you’re planning on delivering to the UK or to Australia.
  • Measuring & weighting your items. You’ll need to measure and weight your items to determine your packaging cost. For instance, the estimated price of a package delivered won’t be the same if your items are light or heavy. Most carriers use either volumetric or dimension weight to calculate their fees. If your items are heavy or large, make sure your carrier is able to process with your request as sometimes maximum weight and size limits might apply with certain carriers. Also, make sure to factor costs like boxes, bubble wraps, labels or inks.
  • Handling costs. Don’t forget to calculate your handling costs too. Delivering an item is not the only cost related to delivery that needs to be taken into account. Someone in your company (or yourself) will have to wrap and pack the items, take the packages to your closest post office etc.. It means that you need to take into account the time spent preparing an order. This simple equation will help you calculate the value of your time spent preparing an order for delivery;

[Average Number Of Minutes Worked To Package An Item / 60] x Hourly Rate

Choosing A Shipping Method

There’s no one-size-fits-all… Testing is the only way to determine what really works for your business. After a few weeks you should normally be able to figure out what products sell, where your customers are usually located, etc. All these information are going to help you get a clearer idea of where you can cut or increase your shipping costs.

Here is a list of all the shipping methods available with PushCommerce.

  • Free Shipping. Offering free shipping can be a real advantage to make your business stand out from the crowd in addition to simplifying a lot the checkout process.
  • Flat Rate. Using flat rate is another great way to keep things simple. You’ll first need to test it before figuring out what exact single rate works best for your business.
  • Based On Cart Price. Here the charge can go up and down depending on the total cart price. It’s a flexible way to charge your customers.
  • Based On Category. It’s another flexible way to charge your customers. The charge can also go up and down based on the selected category.
  • Based On Cart Weight. Your rate will be calculated upon the basis of the cumulative weight of the items being purchased.
  • Pick Up/Collect. This option offers many advantages: no late delivery, and you’ll get a direct contact with your customers!
  • Same Day Delivery: Offering same day delivery to your customers is also an excellent way to get customer’s attention.

 

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